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Group Communication, Media Management, Seminars & Etiquettes
HAND BOOK CONTENTS
Group Communication Meaning and Definition of Group Factors Affecting Group Communication Group Communication Network Importance of Group Communication Meetings Meaning and Definition of Meeting Objectives of Meeting Types of Meeting Planning Meeting Participants Timing and Venue of Meetings Leading Meetings Conducting and Participating in Meetings Notice and Agenda/Documentation Minutes of Meeting Kinds of Minutes Hints for Writing Minutes Seminars Purpose of Seminar Running the Seminar How to Make Seminar Effective Workshop Conference Types of Conferences Features of Conference Purpose of the Conference Conducting a Conference Media Management Press Releases Characteristics of a Good Press Release Tips for Writing Successful Press Release Press Conference Invitation to Press Conference Major Steps for Setting up a Press Conference Media Interviews Preview the Circumstances Prepare for the Interview Post-Interview Evaluation Questions Business Etiquettes Meaning and Importance of Business Etiquettes Fundamental Rules of Business Etiquette Scope of Business Etiquette Introduction Business Dining Business Lunch Etiquettes for Host Interaction with Foreign Clients Interpersonal Business Etiquette (Face-to-Face Contacts) Business-to-Business Etiquette Telephone Etiquette
GROUP COMMUNICATION Meetings Planning Meetings Objectives Participants Timing Venue of Meetings Leading Meetings. Media Management The Press Release Press Conference Media Interviews Seminars Workshop Conferences. Business Etiquettes.
Group Communication, Media Management, Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8)
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In every organization, where groups are formed in order to transact some formally designed matters, certain types of communication patterns can be established formally. Formal pattern cannot be ignored where a group is headed by a chairman. Some patterns of network of communication exist not only when a chairperson is appointed but also where the physical arrangement of a layout of meeting hall establish relationship in a particular way. According to F.E. Kast and his Associates, even in these kinds of situation, communication pattern can evolve that support or transcend and subvert the supposedly established pattern. The analysis of communication processes in groups often reveals a communication "centre." In every small and formal group, it is quite possible to develop a variety of communication patterns. Some of the research studies on communication in small groups reveal countless variations of communication patterns. For instance, take a group of five members; different typical network arrangements emerge.
Meaning and Definition of Group
A group consists of two or more persons who interact with each other, consciously for the achievement of certain common objectives. The members of the group are inter-dependent and are aware that they are part of a group. According to David H. Smith, “A group is a set of two or more individuals who are jointly characterized by a network of relevant communications, a shared sense of collective identity and one or more shared dispositions with associated normative strength”. According to Edgar H. Schien, “A group may be defined as a social phenomenon in which two or more persons decide to interact with one another, share common ideology and perceive themselves as a group”. In order to be called a group, an aggregation of persons must satisfy the following conditions: i) People must interact with one another. ii) People must be psychologically aware of one another. iii) People should perceive themselves to be a group.
Characteristics of a Group
1) Social Interaction: One of the most obvious characteristics of group is that they are composed of two or more people in social interaction. In other words, the members of group must have influence on each other. The interaction between parties may either verbal on non-verbal, but the parties must have some impact on each other to be considered as a group. 2) Stable Structure: Group also must posses a stable structure. Although groups can change, and often do, there must be some stable relationships that keep group members together and functioning as an unit.
Interaction between two or more people Awareness of each other
Figure: Characteristics of a Group
3) Common Interest: The formulation of a group is closely related to some common goals or purpose. The achievement of common goals of a group is a matter of common concern for every member and they have an obligation to contribute for attaining the common goals. 4) Perceive Themselves as Part of Group: Finally, to be a group, the individuals involved must perceive themselves as a group. Group is composed of people who recognize each other as a member of their group and can distinguish these individuals from non-members.
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Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication)
Factors Affecting Group Communication
There are several factors that affect group dynamics and thereby shape the outcome of group discussions. Let us consider a few of these: 1) Size: The smaller the group, the better its members can communicate with each other. When the group is a large one members have fewer opportunities to interact with each other. Researchers haven’t yet hit upon an optimal number of members for the effective functioning of groups, but it is generally believed that groups of five to seven members are ideal for decision-making and problem-solving tasks. 2) Longevity: Groups formed for short-term goals, such as to arrange a dinner, usually focus more on the task at hand, rather than on maintaining interpersonal relationships. Groups formed for long-term assignments may devote a lot more time to maintaining relationships among members.
Table: Roles People Play in Groups Self-Oriented Roles Controlling: Dominating others exhibiting superiority or authority. by Group Maintenance Roles Encouraging: Drawing out other members by showing verbal and nonverbal support, praise, or agreement. Harmonizing: Reconciling differences among group members through mediation or by using humor to relieve tension. Compromising: Offering to yield on a point in the interest of reaching a mutually acceptable decision. Task-Facilitating Roles Initiating: Getting the group started on a line of inquiry. Information giving or Seeking: Offering (or seeking) information relevant to questions facing the group. Coordinating: Showing relationships among ideas, clarifying issues, summarizing what the group has done. Procedure Setting: Suggesting decision-making procedures that will move the group toward a goal.
Withdrawing: Retiring from the group either by becoming silent or by refusing to deal with a particular aspect of the group’s work. Attention Seeking: Calling attention to oneself and demanding recognition from others. Diverting: Focusing group discussion on topics of interest to the individual rather than those relevant to the task.
3) Leadership: Leadership that aims at achieving task goals, while at the same time maintaining interpersonal relationships in the group, is likely to make for greater group success. 4) Perception and Self-Concept: Each member of a group generally has his own perception about how the group should function, what kind of goals it should have and how it should work toward it. At the same time he also has a self-concept, which determines how he will interact with the others in the group. The successful working of a group depends to a great extent on its ability to satisfy the expectations and support the self-concepts of its members. 5) Status: Sometimes some members of a group have a better social standing or are better qualified than the others. The status of the members determines the manner in which they interact with each other. People tend to communicate with peers as their equals, but they tend to speak upward to superiors and downward to subordinates.
Group Communication Network
Bernard and his associate developed basic communication network in task-oriented small groups. Their network models are as follows: 1) Wheel pattern 2) Y-pattern 3) Chain pattern 4) Circle pattern 5) Free flow pattern. The network models are given below. The numbers given in each model refer to how many times that particular individual has been recognized as a leader. In other words, the numbers refer to the frequency of occurrence of recognized leaders at different positions in the various patterns. 1) Wheel Pattern: In case of wheel network, the leader seems to emerge at the position of higher centrality. It is the hub of a wheel. In this type of network, communication flows upward to peripheral members.
forces other than the communication network obviously become more important in the evolution of the leader in the small group. each person can communicate with two persons. middle level tactical management involve in communication. These are two neighbors. In its vertical position. Increased acceptance of solution is possible. people concerned with the decisions will be more likely to accept it and encourage others. Media Management. 2) Diversity of Views: There is no scope in group deliberations for any homogeneity of ideas. In a vertical position. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . B indicate that a leader of a group seems to emerge at the position of the work. Groups permit not only more knowledge and information as input but it can bring heterogeneity in the decision-making process. 3) Acceptance: In addition to heterogeneity to the decision-making group. Importance of Group Communication 1) Wide Knowledge: Groups permit to pool more detailed information and knowledge. Several alternatives can be considered and the best possible solutions can be arrived at.Group Communication. "for the circle. it represents a communication network where everyone communicates with one another. decisions are accepted for implementation. the leader of a group seems to emerge at the midpoint of the chain.179 Figure A: Wheel Pattern 2) Y-Pattern: Figure A. . but through a leader. Under this model. There is a support and backing for group decision. The aggregation of ideas of several individuals helps to make quality and sound decision. They constitute crucial impulse for sound decision-making. Deputy General Manager and functional head.” Circle or circular network communication permits at a time only two individuals in communication with each other. the neighbors are in communication with each other. 0 0 3 17 1 Figure B: Y-Pattern 3) Chain Pattern: In the chain pattern. Y-type network is one in which top level strategic management. The first and the last person have no direct contact. messages travel downward from chairman to the Managing Director to General Manager. 0 4 14 3 Figure C: Chain Pattern 0 4) Circle Pattern: Kast and his associate say that. hence cannot communicate. Figure D: Circle Pattern 5) Free-flow Pattern: As the name indicates.
all the facts and figures having any bearing on the subject should be collected and circulated among the members. but probably various other communication activities will consume more of time. 7) To resolve conflicts and confusions. 3) To exchange ideas and experiences among the members.180 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) 4) Legitimacy: In a democratic set-up. “A business meeting is a gathering where purposive discouragement occurs among three or more people who exchange information on a common topic or problem. 2) Distribute the Agenda among All the Members: If members are ignorant of the agenda. Types of Meeting 1) Formal Meetings: The rules of conduct of formal meetings are laid down in company's Articles of Association and/or Constitution or Standing Orders. According to Herta Murphy. it is called a ‘Meeting’. 4) Restrict the Number of Invitees: Large groups tend to be unproductive. Points for a Successful Meeting 1) Clearly Define the Purpose of the Meeting: If it is necessary to call a meeting. 5) To discuss problems and issues of common interest. 4) To brief members on plans. Specifically. the next step is to determine who should attend the meeting and what items should be on the agenda.e. Objectives of Meeting In modern organizations. 9) To generate a positive attitude among the participants. With such meetings a quorum must be present. one is likely to spend more time conducting and participating in meetings. Clearly define the purpose of the meeting Restrict the number of invitees MEETINGS Distribute the agenda among all the members Provide all the facts 3) Provide All the Facts: If a meeting has been called to discuss the declining sales of a particular product. 6) To persuade members to accept changes. A single person’s decision is known for its autocracy and arbitrariness.” A meeting is an assembly where people interact to discuss the issues and problems find solutions and take decisions on them. 2) To gather information from the members. Meaning and Definition of Meeting When the Managing Director invites his departmental heads to discuss some problem. interviewing. and telephoning. meetings are held to fulfill large number of objectives like: 1) To convey information to the members.. the . dictating. legitimate than decisions made by a single person. Meetings Formal speaking and oral reporting may be an important part of business communication. and none else. for better understanding or for the solving of a problem. Only those person should be invited who are closely concerned with the subject to be discussed. 8) To take decisions of matters affecting the group or the organization. Group decisions are more consistent with democratic ideas. These are therefore. working and performance and to instruct members. group decisions are based on the principles of democracy.G . they will not be able to make any advance preparation and there participation in the meeting will be ineffective. i.
Group Communication. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . Media Management. or objectives. deliberations at the meeting should involve all the concerned functionaries. report on progress or receive progress reports. Planning Meeting Effective planning always increases the probability of a successful meeting. whether the addressee may bring one or two other colleagues dealing with the subject or. in this case. All staff will be invited to attend it so that information can be passed on or reports received from some members of staff regarding a specific project. “New Security Procedures at CONTECH”). Invitations have to be sent well in advance to ensure that outstation participants have sufficient time to make appropriate travel plans. 2) Participants To be effective. production manager and research and development manager may meet to discuss the launch of a new product being launched soon. senior functionaries will have to be necessarily invited to lend authority to the decision-making process. whereas some junior level functionaries and subject matter specialists will have to be present to provide technical details and other relevant papers. The addressee. 3) Timing and Venue of Meetings Care should be taken in fixing up the meetings in a manner that is convenient to most of the members or participants. other important .181 minimum number of people who should be present in order to validate the meeting. Companies are required by law to hold these statutory meetings. in the alternative if one is not in a position to attend. 4) Board Meetings: Board meetings are held as often as individual organizations require. Usually. in the absence of a formal list. time and venue of the meeting. wherever not specifically stated. the marketing manager. 2) Annual General Meeting (AGM): AGMs are held once a year to assess the trading of the organization over the year. when one is not a formal member of the committee or has had no prior intimation about it. which do not clearly indicate whether they are sent as an invitation or just as intimation. Invitation for the meeting is to be clearly drawn up indicating the day. A notice. The meeting notice should also state wherever appropriate. “CONTECH managers will be thoroughly briefed on all aspects of the new Department of Defense security requirements”). In some cases. Sometimes. However. it is usually considered good business practice for an agenda to be issued to all members prior to the meeting so that they can prepare adequately in order to make a valuable contribution. will have to be invariably invited. 6) Departmental Meetings: These meetings are called by Head of the Department or Manager of a certain section. will ensure that participants get adequate opportunity to schedule or reschedule their engagements. At the same time. sales manager. wherever formally constituted. For example. They are attended by all directors and chaired by the chairman of the board. Regular members of the committees. are best decided in consultation with the chairperson and other senior functionaries on whose behalf the meeting is organized. All shareholders are invited to attend the AGM but they must be given 21 days' notice. progress reports will be given and decisions for further action taken. More so. is likely to be confused and will have to start making enquiries. well in advance. Persons to be invited to the meeting. meetings have more than one objective. usually by the company secretary. At meetings. 3) Statutory Meetings: Statutory meetings are called so that the directors and shareholders can communicate and consider special reports. they are often overlooked. These meetings are attended by a group of managers who may need to discuss a specific matter. Meeting notice should clearly indicate who will attend the meeting. Such meetings may take the form of brainstorming or discussion sessions where strict agendas may not be necessary and minutes may not be kept. whether someone else can be deputed on one’s behalf. The date and time should be fixed taking into account holidays. consider these points: 1) What is the Objective of the Meeting? Effective business communication requires a clear understanding of one’s objective. people in organizations receive notice. As you plan a meeting. date. 5) Informal Meetings: Informal meetings are not restricted by the same rules and regulations as formal meetings. 7) Working Parties: Working parties may be set up to work together on a specific project or problem. Though most of these requirements look obvious. A formal record of these meetings must be kept. it would be essential to identify people whose presence would be of significance when subjects are taken up for deliberation. An objective should describe what you expect the meeting to accomplish (for example. An objective is more specific than a topic (for example.
182 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) events and functions which may clash with the meeting dates and time. 4) What Materials. Center Table Layout U-Shaped Layout Classroom Layout Theater Layout Figure: Four Layouts for Meetings Leading Meetings The leader of a meeting has one basic goal. as a result of which either meeting is delayed or participants are made to move from one venue to the other. or there is some misunderstanding in the date or time. How should the room be laid out? Four popular meeting layouts are: 1) The table in the center of the room with all of the participants sitting around it. need to be mentioned. and Room Layout will be required for the Meeting? Be prepared with whatever materials are needed. some advance planning and enquiries will certainly help achieve better attendance at meetings. microphones. cramped seating. lunch. there is bound to be considerable demand for meeting halls and conference rooms. A little extra care will avoid embarrassment and inconvenience at the time of the meeting. glasses. are in a position to attend and contribute. coffee and snacks. such as cups. 3) The classroom layout. to accomplish the objectives of the meeting.. Nothing says more about your philosophy of meeting management than starting a meeting promptly. obviously well before the meeting notices are dispatched. With so many meetings taking place in organizations. The following guidelines will prove useful to you as you assume this role: 1) Starting on Time Start the meeting on time. details such as arrangements made. hinder the effectiveness of communication. It is not uncommon in organizations to come across instances where the availability of the venue is not confirmed. and napkins. It is generally expected that the person convening the meeting will take some trouble to ensure that most of the members. a VCR. accommodation. Ensure a sufficient supply of tableware. etc. if not all. toilets.. Further. for breakfast. Equipment. Indication of the duration of the meeting will also be helpful so that participants would know how much time they have to allot for attending the meeting. air conditioners. projectors. including notepads and pencils for each participant. extraneous sounds. and handouts. . if any. etc. 2) The U-shaped layout..G . etc. and soft drinks. Physical barriers such as non-availability of sound systems. a slide projector. an overhead projector. Have such equipment as flip charts. Possible refreshments include water. The meeting venue should have all the required physical facilities − fans. It happens so infrequently that starting at the time specified in the agenda will serve as an excellent attention-getting device. that ensure minimum comfort for the members and facilitate uninterrupted deliberations. stuffy rooms. Refreshments. travel. or a lectern for speakers ready if necessary. The venue of the meeting should be fixed up. and make it difficult for the members to choose between one and the other. nametags or place cards. and 4) The theater layout. While it may not be possible to totally avoid overlapping in all cases.
Offer a summary of what has been accomplished at the meeting.Group Communication. They will range from one extreme of formality to the other. too. especially one that walks the group down memory lane. Offer some remarks intended to achieve the following objectives: i) Establish the right tone − usually serious and positive. issue direct. Deal assertively but patiently with disruptive members. ask for justification of the relevance of the comments to the agenda item under consideration. A storyteller. Sometimes the group as a whole is quiet. signal the participants by asking for any final comments or questions. be sure to thank the group members for their time and contributions. Be careful not to let your opening remarks serve as a springboard for the group to get off track. and you may need to prime the pump. the quality of the communication will determine the meeting’s success. open the meeting with an appropriate set of remarks. 3) Getting to Business After you finish your opening remarks. If a meeting member resists your request to change direction. . 4) Participation Facilitate balanced participation among meeting members. Otherwise. pose open questions to them. For example. If the discussion starts to drift from the item being considered. iv) Review the objectives of the meeting as expressed as items on the agenda. another meeting will be scheduled on this subject. Conducting and Participating in Meetings From time to time in business. On the formal end will be conferences and committee meetings. Finally. If the group appears prepared but reticent. open-ended questions to the quiet ones. close the meeting. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . For example. Whatever forms the meeting takes. “Is the meeting over?” Before you close the meeting. when the meeting must end. and it is embarrassing to have someone inquire. iii) Offer any background comments that might prove useful to the group − for example. Rather than muzzle the more talkative participants. remember to exercise some strategic flexibility when appropriate. Effective meeting leadership ensures that participation is balanced. We’ve got only an hour left to cover four more items!” Again. Some participants talk too much while others talk too little. a few members of the group will not dominate the discussion at the expense of less-assertive colleagues. Media Management. Remind participants of time constraints. let people know that minutes will be sent to all participants.183 2) Opening Remarks Once you have the group’s attention. etc. consider holding another meeting addressed to that item. for instance. can sidetrack a meeting with an irrelevant story. specifically soliciting their comments or advice. attendees may feel muzzled. move to the first item on the agenda. it will involve communication. On the informal end will be discussions with groups of fellow workers. firmly steer the group back to the item. and explain what will occur next. If it is. “What problems should we anticipate as we implement the new security system?” If the group’s silence is related to a general level of unpreparedness. Do the same for humorists and digressers. then consider rescheduling the meeting or offering sufficient information (in the form of handouts or a briefing) to improve the level of preparation. An occasional story or digression may prove a harmless diversion and even provide a useful release for group tension. After the first story. Once you have covered the items on the agenda. 6) Closing Close the meeting at the appropriate time. If it appears that an item may require substantially more time than the agenda allows. But employ some strategic leniency at times. inquire about the relevance of any later stories to the point under discussion. why the meeting was called. you could say. 5) Agenda Use your agenda to keep the discussion on track. do not attempt to limit discussion prematurely. If an agenda item elicits far more productive discussion than you anticipated while planning the agenda. In fact. “We’d better return to Item Two. ii) Be sure to identify any participant’s unknown to the group. you will participate in meetings. Meetings sometimes continue aimlessly after the items have been covered. Identify any time constraints not already expressed on the agenda − for example.
you can summarize the total progress made. In addition. After you have prepared the agenda. 2) Follow the Plan: You should follow the plan for the meeting item by item. In business groups. you want the meeting to be democratic. some talk too little. Then. the group’s vote will be the conclusion. at the appropriate time intervals. In general. you can do so tactfully by asking on other viewpoints or by summarizing the discussion and moving on to the next topic. You may find it helpful to announce the time goals at the beginning of the meeting and to remind group members of the time status throughout the meeting. you should select the topics that must be covered in order to achieve the goals of the meeting. you can depart somewhat from these procedures and techniques. you should bring up the next one. On such occasions. duplicate. you should move it back on subject. Your participation. you should follow it. Thus. 1) Plan the Meeting: A key to conducting a successful meeting is to plan it thoroughly—that is. In most groups. frequently those who say little are in positions lower than other members’ positions. For less formal meetings. you would do well to study any of the many books covering parliamentary procedure beforehand. These rules are quite specific and are too detailed for review here. 5) Encourage Participation from those who Talk Too Little: Just as some people talk too much. minutes kept by a secretary will provide this summary. you have the additional job of controlling time. For informal meetings. Thus. In most meetings. You should participate. Your task as leader is to control these people of course. you can take them up at the end—or perhaps postpone them for a future meeting.G . Meetings of groups such as formal committees. you should step in. . As leader. the discussion tends to stray and new items come up. When one item has been covered. 3) Move the Discussion Along: As leader. Items that explain or lead to other items should come before the items they explain or lead to. At the end of the meeting. however. Your goal is to permit complete discussion on the one hand and to avoid repetition. you should formally conclude each point and then move to the next one. 4) Control Those who Talk Too Much: One of your difficult tasks is likely to be that of keeping certain members from talking too much. 7) Summarize at Appropriate Places: After a key item has been discussed. But in your efforts. You should talk only when you have something to contribute. you should do your part. For some formal meetings. But you should keep in mind that every meeting has goals and that your departures from procedure and technique should never hinder reaching the objectives. In cases in which a group decision is needed. and you should talk every time you have something to contribute. Techniques for Participating in a Meeting 1) Follow the Agenda: When an agenda exits. should be meaningful. Of course. and professional organizations usually follow generally accepted rules of conduct called parliamentary procedure. you can encourage them to participate by showing respect for their comments. Specifically. you should control the agenda. nor should you comment on such item if brought up by others. Your job as leader is to bring these people into the discussion. in any event.184 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) Your role in a meeting will be that of either a leader or a participant. In developing the agenda. and useless comments on the other. boards of directors. even if they are illogical. you should keep the discussion on track. When they begin to stray. excessive details. 2) Participate: The purpose of meetings is to get information from every body concerned. The following paragraphs review the techniques of performing well in both roles. a few people tend to dominate the discussion. you should not bring item not on the agenda. you should summarize what the group has covered and concluded. so you will need to let these people talk as long as they are contributing to the goal. If new items arise during the meeting. You should arrange these items in the most logical order. You can do this by asking them for their viewpoints. you will have to use your good judgment. When there is no agenda. Techniques for Conducting Meetings The way you should conduct a meeting is related to the formality of the occasion. 6) Control Time: When your meeting time is limited. you should end discussion of the items. you should do what is needed to proceed through the items efficiently. You should do this whenever such a review will help the group members understand their accomplishments during the meeting. you should stay with in the general limits of the meeting’s goal. you should develop an agenda (a list of topics to be covered). but good participation also is vital. When the discussion moves off subject. you should not cut off discussion before all important points have been made. you must determine in advance how much time will be needed to cover each item. or bring in useless matter. Also. you may find keeping the agenda in mind sufficient. you should make it available to participants if the meeting is formal. you should know and practice the following techniques. the leader’s role is the primary one. When you are involved in formal meetings.
place. This is the list of topics to be discussed at the meeting. They serve as an aid to memory and provide a basis for action. In the example shown here note that the first three and final two items are known as ordinary business. These are items which will be included on every meeting agenda. As you speak. Minutes are generally written by the secretary of the organizational unit which sponsors or holds the meeting. you should respect their rights and opinions and permit them to speak. You should speak up wherever you have something to say. and the tasks assigned to individual members and groups. date and time of the meeting. you should be courteous to other group members. Committees of Directors and General Body of a joint-stock company is a legal requirement. expressed by members during the course of discussion are . They are not a verbatim record of the proceedings of a meeting. An important one is to ensure that all the documentation is dealt efficiently. Minutes usually contain the main points of discussion. but other organizations also follow this practice.185 3) Avoid Talking too Much: As your participation in the meeting. The emotions and feelings. The notice and agenda are usually combined in one document. 5) Be Courteous: Perhaps courtesy is a natural part of co-operation. You should respect the other participants and work with them in every practical way. This gives details of the type. but do not get carried away. The portion at the top is known as the notice. So keep this in mind as you participate. Specifically. 4) Co-operate: A meeting by its very nature requires cooperation from all participants. Keeping minutes of the meetings of the Board of Directors. In any event. After the opening items of ordinary business there will be a list of special business – these are special matters to be discussed at this meeting only. Notice and Agenda/Documentation The success of a meeting depends on a variety of essential preparations. day.Group Communication. ask yourself whether what you are saying really contributes to the discussion. day. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . the conclusions reached. date and time of meeting A meeting of the Sports and Social Club will be held in the Conference Suite A on Friday 14 May 2007 at 1800 Use the heading AGENDA AGENDA 1) Apologies for absence These three items of ordinary business are included on every agenda (some committees will also include ‘Correspondence’ 2) Minutes of last meeting 3) Matters arising 4) Chairman’s Report 5) Football Results and Matches (Frank Jones) 6) New Keep-Fit Classes (Carol Chen) 7) Purchase of Tennis Equipment (Aileen Forster) 8) Annual Dinner and Dance 9) Any other business 10) Date of next meeting Special business is listed separately (any official reports come first) Finish all agendas with these final two items of ordinary business CE/ST Don’t forget reference and date 7th May 2007 Minutes of Meeting The official records of discussions held and decisions taken at a meeting are called minutes. SOCIAL CLUB Company name and committee name Notice states place. KANPUR TEXTILE STORES CO. be aware that other people are attending. if any. The agenda is the middle portion of the document. Always respect the rights of others. the recommendations made. Media Management.
Considering the Minutes of Directors’ meeting: i) The minutes of the meeting held on December 10. are a special type of summary of what happened at a meeting. They always start with the word ‘Resolved’ followed by the exact text of the resolution.186 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) generally not recorded. concise. approved by the members and signed by the chairman. They are more analogous to a telegram than to a letter. were approved by the Board and signed by the Chairman. For example. Board of Governors. iii) Resolved that Mr. 7) Signature of the secretary and the Chairman. Naresh Dhawan should. Narain Rao seconded it. iv) It was decided that the Finance Manager. In many organizations. It is. Keep them in mind. only a resolution or proposal that was approved is recorded. for inviting applications for shares. . 3) The names of persons who were present as well as those who were absent should be given. 20.g. time and place of the meeting. If a member suggests an amendment.G . approved. 8) Notes of the meeting should be recorded during the meeting. 3) The number of the meeting if it is in a series. J. Minutes. 6) Record of transactions. 9) Minutes of the meeting should be verified. take down notes carefully at the meeting. 3) Verbatim Minutes: these are used primarily in court reporting were everything needs to be recorded word by word. Finance Committee.. in the beginning. at the next meeting. 25th April. the company secretary should consider the following points: 1) Minutes of each meeting must clearly state the nature of the meeting. minutes should be quickly written in case some important facts have been missed. For example: Resolved. When you are called upon to write the minutes of a meeting. ii) Mr. produce a draft of the prospects to be issued in June. These like reports. Singh proposed the name of Mr. 7) The tone of the minutes should be impersonal. however.. Atul Sharma be appointed Managing Director of the company. 2) It should mention the date. of those who could not attend. e. Soon after it is over.g. Before giving a final shape show them to the chairman. 2) The date.B. 20. 4) Name of the chairman of the meeting..e. the names of the proposer and seconder are not mentioned. v) The secretary was directed to call next meeting on May 10. 5) The language of the minutes should be clear and concise. 20.f. After the meeting. Often the minutes are circulated to members beforehand and then at the next meeting the chairman confirms them after ascertaining that members have no amendments to suggest. accurate and well-organized summary of the business transacted is all that is required. 20. Mr. A clear. only decisions and resolution arrived at the meetings are recorded. When a proposal or a resolution is approved by a majority. not necessary that they should appear in the order in which they are listed below: 1) The name of the organizational unit. 5) Names of members present. 2) Minutes of Narration: Minutes of narration record the brief discussion and circumstances leading to the resolution in addition to the resolution passed.. To facilitate reference give each item a heading and a number. Kinds of Minutes Minutes may be minutes of resolutions or the minutes of narration or both. check it up with some other members to ensure accuracy. 1) Minutes of Resolutions: In the minutes of resolution. the practice differs. If you have any doubt regarding a statement or fact. 4) Each minute should have a serial number and an appropriate index or heading to facilitate quick reference. 6) The minutes should not contain reference of the feelings and emotions expressed by any member. Atul Sharma as managing director and Mr. in fact. time and place of the meeting.. The following items are generally given in the minutes. that the resignation of Mr. or modified in the subsequent meeting. however. Lalit Mohan be accepted w.. and those who attended by special invitation. The minutes become final only when they have been read at the next meeting. are drafted in narrative form. e. Sixth Meeting of the Board of Directors.. prepare a draft of the minutes. the chairman signs the minutes after seeking the approval of the members present at the meeting. you may give the name of the proposer and the seconder and also record the number of votes cast for and against it. Hints for Writing Minutes While writing minutes of the meeting.
Rahul Dhawan 3) Mr.. a form of academic instruction. The chairman Mr. Mann Advocate 3) Mr. N. In attendance: 1) Mr. Rohit Tuneja 6) Mr.K. Rajan Chadha 4) Mr. Puneet Sharma Secretary 2) Mr. 20. Atul Ahuja Auditor.00 p.187 Minutes of the Annual General Meeting Dhawan Fertilizer Limited S. Seminars A seminar is a meeting for exchanging information and holding discussions on a somewhat smaller scale than a conference. Vishal Thukral 5) Mr. 14. Moreover. S. Rohit Tuneja proposed a vote of thanks to the chairman and chairman suitably replied to it.elected as a director. in which everyone present is requested to actively participate. . Joshi who retires by rotation is unanimously re. As a result more serious discussions are held in a seminar within a limited period than in a conference. N. It has the function of bringing together small groups for recurring meetings.000 per annum. convening the meeting..-20. 20. Atul Ahuja Chartered Accountant be appointed as Auditor of the company for the year 20. 20... It was unanimously resolved that Mr. B.. 3) To expand on material introduced in large lectures.m. This is often accomplished through an ongoing Socratic dialogue with a seminar leader or instructor. It was unanimously resolved that 10% dividend on the paid up equity share capital be declared for the year ending March 20. A seminar is. Chandigarh The minutes of the 10th Annual General meeting of the company held at the registered office SCO 14. Puneet Sharma Secretary Ashok Dhawan Director 8) 9) Vote of Thanks Termination of Meeting June 24. N. Mr. 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) 6) 7) Subject of the Minute Notice of the Meeting Auditor’s Report The Chairman’s Speech Directors’ Report Dividend Retirement by Rotation and Re-election Appointment of Auditor Details of the Minutes The secretary read the notice dated May 24. or through a more formal presentation of research. Rahul Dhawan moved and Mr. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . at 3. The chairman declared the meeting as terminated. but to reach more depth. Mr. generally. Siyal 7) Mr. Ashok Dhawan 2) Mr.. focusing each time on some particular subject. with a remuneration of Rs. No. The secretary read the Auditor’s Report on Annual Accounts and Balance Sheet. It was unanimously approved. Normally. Joshi Chairman Director Director Director Director Director Director Other 125 members were present as shown in the attendance Register.Group Communication. Ashok Dhawan in his speech told about company’s progress and plans of the future. Present 1) Mr. Rajan Chadha recorded the motion on Director’s Report. It was unanimously approved..O. Media Management. participants must not be beginners in the field under discussion Purpose of Seminar 1) To get the students to present material orally and visually. either at a university or offered by a commercial or professional organization. 25. Sitting quiet in a seminar is generally not expected.S.K. Mr.B. Sector 17E. Every participant in a seminar is supposed to present paper after the reading of which all the participants are supposed to discuss it in great detail. and Chandigarh on Saturday June 24.C. 2) To get the students to lead a discussion. Sector 17E.. a seminar is more limited and formal in its nature while a conference is wider and more informal.
8) If students will be employed in peer assessment involve them in developing the assessment criteria. possibly involving different topics for each group. activities and timetable. and how it relates to other parts of the module (e. outcomes and approaches are not clear. However if a seminar is well planned. 2) Know why you are using a seminar approach. 4) Devise an approximate timetable of activities (it might be necessary to be flexible to allow for students taking slightly different times on tasks than you expect). e. ensure that they have the same paperwork. e. 2) Relate the topic of the seminar to the overall learning outcomes of the module.g. 3) Consider any assessment that the session should prepare the student for. Use a role-play exercise. 6) Ask them to contribute early in the session.188 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) 4) 5) 6) 7) 8) 9) 10) 11) To provide a forum for students to ask questions. 4) Students have been involved in the session. about how students are expected to behave during others' presentations/contributions etc.. Planning Seminars So As to Avoid Problems It is probable that in using seminars and thus gaining the benefit of student centered learning and active participation there will always be some that "work better" than others. 4) Be clear to give them any deadlines by which activities/work must be completed. but leave with a rather hazy view of the outcomes. To engage in a more formal debate.g.g. within a module. The difficulties are most likely to be with discussion sessions rather than workshops which ask the students to undertake much defined tasks. Remember the following: 1) Be careful to tell the students at the start what you want them to achieve. how to make a good presentations. 9) Use parallel seminar groups to assess each others’ presentations. lectures). Set the students problems to be solved. they are likely to understand the assessment task better. Students are less likely to speak out if only the lecturer has spoken in the first five to ten minutes. These items are often very successfully discussed by the group and will make the students feel more committed. 7) Students who prepare work to be marked by their seminar teacher collude with another student in a different group and assume this "cheating" will not be spotted. 6) Make sure any other staff delivering the same seminar is fully aware of the intended outcomes. 5) Encourage discussion of any "ground rules" of the sessions. 3) The discussion drifts a long way "off the point" and the major topic is not covered adequately. possibly depending on the precise composition of the student group. 7) Discuss the processes students will be using..G . Involve the students in either group or teamwork.. The principle of planning a session is identical to that which one would use for a lecture or any other teaching session: 1) Decide on the outcomes you want the students to achieve. Ask the students to undertake peer assessment of each other’s work (oral presentation or written work). 3) Be careful to give the students very clear instructions of how you want them to undertake any tasks. Problems that can arise in Seminars Sometimes seminars’ do not achieve as much as one hope. 5) Prepare any handouts that will support the students. 6) A group of staff providing the same seminars. Students arrive at the seminar unprepared for the discussion. Running the Seminar Because a seminar is less structured than a lecture it is more important to be sure that the students know exactly what they are doing and why. so the lecturer dominates the session. some of the pitfalls may be avoided. Ask the students to undertake case study work. 2) Only one or two students speak and dominate the session. 5) Students in different seminar groups (in the same module) complain of different learning experiences. To encourage the students to take part in a discussion and express their own point of views. on the same topic can deliver a very different experience if the purposes. . 7) Make sure that the seminars do not stand-alone but are actively related to the rest of the module. what goes into effective teamwork. The problems can be: 1) Students do not speak out in a seminar. The students will feel more involved in these activities if they feel more confident. about how peer assessment is to be carried out.
6) Thank the speaker and the audience at the end. 6) Stay till the conclusion of the seminar. Organizers’ Role To make seminar effective. 4) Avoid disturbing the speaker during the speech. 16) After the discussion provide a hand out of points which you expected to be raised. Engage them in a discussion/speculation. 2) Publish the relevant material in advance. Media Management. venue and theme of seminar. 5) Ask relevant questions. This will penalize non-attendance and encourage debate. 6) Convey thanks to the audience for their patient listening. 11) If they are unprepared resist the temptation to tell the "the answer". 3) Use the appropriate visual aids like OHP transparencies. 5) Facilitate arrangement of sitting. 2) Ensure that the speaker finishes his speech within time limit. 14) Observe the students' interactions during any discussion and keep a record of these. 2) Ensure that his speech is informative. 5) Try to answer maximum questions of the audience at the end. and other audio visual aids. illuminating and interesting. 4) Ensure the proper arrangement of OHP. How to Make Seminar Effective The effectiveness of seminar depends upon how different parties and persons play their role in effective way. 5) Sum up the findings of the speech after question and answer session. Ask the students to write a reflective log on what they have learned during the seminar. 13) Resist the temptation to "lecture". 15) Be very careful to summarize the learning that has been acquired. slides. . Audience’s Role The audience should: 1) Occupy seats before the start of the seminar. Consider using small assessment tasks during the seminar. which can then be used to allocate marks. but you must be clear in advance that this is what you are doing. but leave them with follow up work to do. slides. 3) Advertise it in newspapers and invite various participants within time. Remind them how the seminar activities contribute to the assessment. organizers should: 1) Plan the seminar in advance by deciding the date. 3) Note down important points and citations. tea or lunch. etc. etc. 12) Make use of techniques to encourage students to contribute. 17) Be very clear about what preparation you expect for the next week. lighting. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . These parties and person include organizers. this may improve the students' motivation. and you may be "hanging around" just keeping an eye on things. Speaker’s Role The speaker of the seminar should: 1) Prepare the topic before hand by searching the material from library and websites. chairperson and audience. in many good seminars the students will be interacting with each other. 4) Ensure that the discussion follows in the light of the theme and no one should hurt the feelings of another during question/answer session. Chairperson’s Role The chairperson of the session should: 1) Introduce the topic briefly.189 10) Make it very clear why you expect them to be prepared and remind them of their responsibility for their own learning.Group Communication. both during and at the end of the session. 3) Invite questions from audience at the end of the speech. This will only encourage them to neglect preparation in the future. 4) Take the time limits into consideration. organizing the topic in logical order and ponder over the various relevant issues. This should be followed by the speaker’s introduction in brief by highlighting the area of his specialization and his achievements. speakers. 2) Listen patiently to the speeches of various speakers.
and to recommend a joint course of action. non-governmental. and ‘carry on a discussion’ by ‘bringing together’. especially in a large conference. “sometimes cooperative. Conferences disseminate information. meet to consider a problem. chalks out detailed programme. It provides a forum to consider a problem and to recommend a joint course of action. invites eminent people to chair various sessions. Features of Conference 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) A conference is a meeting of delegates representing various organizations. multinational. The views expressed at these conferences are communicated to the top management for consideration and decision-making. primarily with a view to having information update. but when the suggestions emerge at a conference and are submitted to the government in the form of a charter. all the advantages of group communication on committees are equally applicable to conferences also. and at the end of the conference. These employees may be exposed to a conference where necessary information about the organization is imparted to them and through discussion in an informal atmosphere. makes arrangements for the stay of the delegates. In the same way. Most of the seminars and workshops begin with the address of an expert specially invited for the occasion. pool knowledge and experience. the sales manager may hold a weekly conference of the salesman to review sales during the week and to plan the next week's strategy on the basis of the views expressed by them. speakers. . More and more organizations — private. They may be dominated by a few vocal delegates who may use them to project their own image and may not contribute much to group thinking. if the delegates come well prepared and if the chairman does his job competently and draw out substantial contribution from all the delegates. etc. they are made to learn all about the organization. The host organization selects the venue of the conference. delegate representing various organization. One of their major advantages is that they succeed in focusing attention of the public as well as the government on the problems being faced by a particular industry. ‘compare opinions’. policies. conferences/ conventions/colloquialism. academic and scientific are holding periodic. The reports of all the groups and their discussion/series of discussions are read out at the end of the conference. They also help to promote public relations and enhance the prestige of the organization convening the conferences. its objectives. is “a period of discussion or practical work on a particular subject in which a group of people learn about the subject by sharing their knowledge or experience”. They can be useful only if they are taken seriously. it has to be divided into several groups or sub-groups for discussion. government. the advertising research and other departments can hold weekly conferences. a conference is essentially a gathering or coming together of people of a particular area of interest or related areas of interest to exchange information. This kind of conference may be described as a conference for training. define problems. they are bound to draw attention. by definition. sends out reports to leading newspapers highlighting some of the important aspects of the conference. So. The government may not care for the suggestions made by different industrial units individually. Then the participants concentrate on the various aspects of the problem/subject spelt out in the expert’s address and start working on the task assigned to them. Some delegates may treat their participation in such conferences as pleasure trips and may not take them seriously at all. and help to solve them. mostly annual. but the results may not justify the expenses incurred. selects the programme. conferences have their limitations also.G . Moreover. 2) Conference for Training New Employees: Conference may sometimes be held to give training to new employees. Like committees. Conferences are similar to committees. Exchanging views in this way is an educative process for the salesmen also. The scope of a conference is generally vast. Big conferences are highly expensive. A conference is to be presided over by a duly elected chair person. Conference The word ‘conference’ has been derived from ‘confer’ that means ‘to consult together’. for they pick quite a few valuable tips from each others experiences and improve their performance. Types of Conferences 1) Conference of the Salesman: Within the organization. They may unconsciously be led into generalizations and specific problems may not be discussed at all. stimulate a creative flow of ideas. sometimes hostile". Such conferences usually last from two to three days.190 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) Workshop A workshop. 3) Conference for Discussing Common Problems: Occasionally a large industrial concern may take initiative and invite delegates from other similar concerns to a conference to discuss problems of mutual interest. Here the emphasis is on the practical training aspect of the knowledge/information sharing and decision-making activity.
confirmations. This will also determine how much time allocation is required to achieve the objectives. such as fine tuning the order of the conference. 6) Exchange information. . it is always helpful to have a conference coordinator who can assist with the finer points of the conference. and content of conference activities will go through many changes until the actual conference is run. time and duration for the conference. They can provide useful suggestions for the conference. 4) Collect and analyze conference evaluations.Group Communication. Preparing a checklist of the conference facilities and requirements will narrow the options. Many conference and function venues get booked well in advance. 4) Venue/Facilities: Selecting the correct venue may require the most time. be sure to leave yourself. Media Management. should be attended to. and presenters enough time to plan ahead for the conference. 7) The consolidated report of the conference is edited and published for wide circulation or brought out in book form for internal and external circulation. if required. as you should always inspect a venue prior to booking it. 4) Brief staff/clients. order. under conference. wheelchair access? 3) Conference Content: Determine the most appropriate topics that will address the conference purpose. Promote the Conference Invitations may be required to be sent out to presenters/facilitators and the intended audience of the conference. name badges. attendees. and conference evaluations. Purpose of the Conference The purpose of a conference may be diverse. 7) Extra Curricular Activities: When the conference is in recess. The final agenda. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . Venue conference co-ordinators know their venue and its capability. After the Event Taking time out after the conference and just covering some of the following will complete the hard work of planning and conducting a conference: 1) Pay all outstanding accounts of the conference. so you may not have many choices if it is left too late. Select activities and presenters who can help achieve the conference purpose. if used. for example. are generally compiled into a consolidated report. 5) Solve problems. the following steps shall then enable a much more accurate duration. but after reviewing. 5) Budget: Work within the cost allocated for each attendee and the conference.191 6) The report and recommendation of the groups. co-ordinating and printing of presenter notes. Keeping the purpose in mind will assist in planning the method to achieve the purpose of the conference. Some of the common purposes are to: 1) Co-ordinate activities. Conducting a Conference 1) Date and Time: Select a date. Posters on notice boards around the workplace are a useful and easy promotion activity of a work conference. 2) Organize presenter notes/conference outcomes. will the attendees be required to participate in any ‘team-building’ activities? Ensure that the venue can accommodate these activities. 3) Secure agreement. table arrangements. Also allow time to be able to find and book a suitable venue. These may all be approximates initially. 8) Products launch. 3) Distribute conference outcomes. When selecting a date. 6) Conference Support: At the venue. How many will be attending. catering options. This amount will narrow the selection of venues suitable for the event. Preparation All the finer details of the conference. 7) Initiate policy. 2) Attendees: Identify the intended audience of the conference. and from how far are they required/able to travel to the conference? Are there any special requirements of attendees in accessing the conference. 2) Build morale.
the dramatic increase in business reporting by the media and a continuing effort by business to initiate reports during the past two decades have forced many companies to improve their ability to use the media to their advantage. Company releases. should not be sent to literary. its chances of getting included will be brighter. However. or film journals. or general. research findings. For if it does not have any news value. The means of communication an organization adopts for conveying messages may be direct and specific. 5) It Should be Suitable for Publication: It should be suitable for publication in the newspaper or journal to which it is being sent. 3) It Should be Brief and Precise: Newspapers are always hard pressed for space. product launches. What. tie-ups and joint ventures. sports. etc. Learning to work quickly and efficiently with the news media – when the situation is positive or negative – is the mark of an effective organization’s communication-management program. performance highlights. Since old news is no news. social issues and crises often require executives to communicate with the public through the media. 4) It Should be Drafted in a Simple Language and Conversational Style: If a news item is not easily readable. When.192 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) MEDIA MANAGEMENT While most of the communication skills of business executives are used within the business community. 6) Who. Both the print and broadcast media have considerable power. Press releases for national newspapers should be shorter than those meant for local newspapers. awards and achievements. and which the business organization wishes to share with the public. If a release is brief and precise. Why: Make sure that the relevant among the 5 Ws − Who. . Where. which is as good as not reading it. benefits to the customers and shareholders. When. Direct messages include personal letters. for example. Names are usually newsworthy. So the press release must be prepared in a lucid style. Nor do their editors have sufficient leisure to prune and edit a lengthy release and prepare a suitable copy. recourse to press release becomes essential. Press releases for any business organization would cover various happenings and business related information which the public would be interested in knowing. through the press and other media. He decides not to read it. e-mail. or to turn to it at a later hour. The relatively recent phenomenon of the major crisis. Why − have been adequately taken care – off: Who? What? When? Name the people involved. the reader is put-off. Avoid buzzwords . Yet surprisingly. nobody would be interested in reading it and no newspaper would accept if for publication.G . ratings and rankings. What. changes in management. 2) It Should be Factually True: Factual truthfulness is a matter of integrity and integrity is an important principle of business communication. Companies should also realize that misrepresentation of facts with a view to misleading the public might bring immediate benefits. Businesses have traditionally mistrusted the various media. direct mailing of brochures and reports.acronyms and jargons. Say what happened that is newsworthy. when the message to be conveyed is of general interest to a large section of the community spread across different target groups. cessation of business. Press releases would generally include financial results. however. Press Releases Press releases relate to the announcement of important messages or developments concerning themselves that organizations wish to convey to the public at large. Mention the time. such as product-tampering. Characteristics of a Good Press Release The six important characteristics of a good press release are: 1) It Should be Newsworthy: Newsworthiness is the basic criterion of a good press release. Where. community oriented initiatives. new branches and offices. meetings and conferences and so on. has also emphasized the importance of a business/media relationship. telephone messages. but such a step is bound to backfire sooner or later. the timing of the press release is extremely important. many upper-level executives still find themselves ill-prepared to meet with and talk to the press under any condition.
Besides.8 crore during the period.8 crore in the last corresponding period. Apart from this. chances are that’s all they may read. JVG Export House 1) Shri.. in other words. They will be called upon to display exceptional awareness. 9:00 a. 107. 10. Find legitimate ways to set you and your company apart and stress those points. The reporter should be able to tell what the release is about from the first two paragraphs.K. To promote your business. Patel Chairman and Managing Director of P&G India attributed the impressive profit growth to continued strong performance of the company’s health care business. And remember the “5 W’s and the H” – make sure your release provides answers to Who. Procter & Gamble Procter & Gamble (P&G) India Ltd. Managing Director. vision and skills. Nehru Place. Where. So don’t hide good information.2 crore in the same period last year. J. In fact. they impart depth to the release. B. 117. iii) Paragraphs should be kept short. they should give the gist.m. ii) The first one or two paragraphs that constitute the lead should be interesting. In a statement issued here. the writer will have to use his discretion to determine what details to include. but if these details are included. there are few other points that can be kept in mind while preparing the releases: i) Every release should be given a heading which is catchy and suggestive but not misleading. M. the JVG Group of Companies is conducting a two-day seminar-cum-workshop on the above subject on July.Group Communication.S. K. Instead of making over-inflated statements.193 Location is also important. has reported a net profit of Rs. showing an increase of 31 per cent over net profit of Rs. 20. provide real. use something like “Rajdeep Named Man of the Year” instead of “Rajdeep Gets Award”. both days Conference Room. Keep it short. a growth of 10 per cent over sales of Rs. Rupen Basu. What. Mahapatra. JVG Export House. Programme Director and Keynote Speaker Other Important Speakers Date Venue Dr. innovative marketing initiatives such as Vicks ‘mega-branding’ and strong advertising. Since press releases are usually very short. and if desirable.. iv) Every release should be accompanied with a covering letter. Allied Sales 2) Shri. 14. rather than one that provides only general statements about how great or interesting your business is without saying why. Example: A press release announcing a seminar-cum-workshop being organized by your company and inviting participants. In order to equip the executives to face this challenge successfully. active. 5:00 p. 3) Avoid Hype and Unsubstantiated Claims: A writer can smell a sales pitch a mile away. Gujral. Seminar-Cum-Workshop: Managing Beyond 2010 – Concepts. When. 20. 2) Put the Most Important Information at the Beginning: This is a tried and true rule of journalism. Personnel Manager. Media Management. (Phone: 6425438) Those desirous of participating should contact the Administration Office. they should be provided with sub-headings... It may not always be possible to answer why. supported by a good monsoon and effective steps to control costs and efficiencies..D.. 20. Why and How. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) Where? Why? G . write a release that answers questions about your business. The company achieved sales of Rs. JVG Export House latest by 15 June.m.18 crore for the first quarter of financial year 1998-99. usable information. and descriptive. company executives will find it a great challenge to retain their position in the corporate world. Jaipur Udyog Limited 7. Tips for Writing Successful Press Release 1) Use an Active Headline to Grab the Reporter’s Attention: The headline makes your release stand out. Skills and Tools In the current economic environment of aggressive competition. Example: A press release about a company’s net profit in the ‘corporate news’. New Delhi... V. 8 July. .
And it’s better to use too many details than too few. date and time of the conference are clearly shown. product or technological breakthrough and the secretary may be asked to call a press conference. cutting edge. as Yudkin notes. but they are difficult for the journalist to understand. save time. you’re not getting to the point. If your release looks sloppy and careless..’ write. 4) For convenience in parking and security reasons. And issue the release on your company letterhead – it looks professional and gives the writer another way to reach your firm.’ Even better. not jargon. you can opt for a third page if it is necessary to provide critical details. or know how a new service works.e. 7) Keep Jargon to the Minimum: If you’re in a technical field. Press Conference Companies nowadays are tapping all possible ways to woo the customers. One of the jobs of a management secretary is to keep a list of contacts of local and national papers. The points to be kept in mind are as follows: 1) The purpose of the conference is clearly stated. It may be that the company wishes to initiate a press release to announce some new exciting project or promotion. best communicates your story. day. but what is it?” syndrome. i. Real English. preferably at the end or midway if it is going to be a multi-session event. 6) If a prominent personality is coming to inaugurate his/her name must be given prominently. and also to relevant people on the media contact list. Many reporters are not as intimate with your company or your industry as you are. save money. Otherwise. So. . give the release to a friend or colleague who does. remember to proofread it for typographical errors. enterprise – wide are common business lingo. ‘Shekhar’s new book contains seven principles of market analysis that enable even casual investors to choose profitable stocks. Special care must be taken in the preparation of the invitation. “Instead of ‘Shekhar’s new book contains information designed to benefit any stock market investor. 5) Keep your Release to two Pages or Less: On the rare occasion. have someone unfamiliar with your product or service read the release and asks him or her to describe what you are trying to publicize. Invitations will be sent out together with copies of the accompanying material to special guests. show how people will benefit. One such way is to organize a press conference and along with that. 9) Be Specific and Detailed: Marcia Yudkin. or independently.” Instead. Many large companies go to a great deal of expense when promoting new products and services to secure the support of the press and the professional and trade journals. etc. a parking slip or sticker may also be sent along with the invitation card. This person should be familiar with all the news in the release. describe two of the seven principles right in the release. 3) The time of the refreshment/drinks/lunch-break must be given. 2) The venue.194 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) 4) Be Active and to the Point: Use language that will get the reader as excited about your news as you are. 5) It is often necessary to state the exact time when the guests are expected to be in their seats. Invitation to Press Conference Having decided upon a press conference the management will make an announcement in prominent dailies or professional journals and send out invitations.” Avoid saying something is “unique” or “the best. author of “Six Steps to Free Publicity” calls this “Yes. Eminent individuals in the relevant field will also be contacted on phone and invited to the event. The reader needs to be able to visualize a new product.G . show it. if you can’t state your message in two pages. an exhibition/launch celebration. so will you. If in doubt. make their life easier. In very large organizations the public relations department or special public relations officer will be responsible for organizing such conferences. try not to use technical terms. 8) Stress Benefits: This falls into the category of “don’t say it. 6) Include a Contact: Make sure your release has a person the journalist can contact for more information. a list of who will be supplied by the organizer of the conference. professional and trade journals on radio and television stations. This will give the company time to decide exactly what it wants to make public and prepare lots of literature and also have displays and samples of products on show.” 10) Proofread: When you’ve finished your press release. If you don’t have a good eye for spelling or grammar. Words like breakthrough. and should be ready to answer questions.
2) Decide What Message You Want to Deliver through the Media: Outline your demands to a decision maker (someone who has the power to give you what you want).M. 2) Explain how they work. 5) Programming. Two-day intensive ‘hands-on’ courses using the latest micro-computing equipment. You are cordially invited to a press conference to launch the most comprehensive short courses.. where they were received with great acclaim both by the business communities and government administrators.. Hyderabad July 17th. 3) Systems Documentation.195 An invitation to a press conference may look like the one that follows: E.. 6) Invite Guests: Make phone calls and send written invitations to prospective guests you want to have at the press conference.Announce a Press Conference. Include information about what people can do to help. Hongkong. Usually the best days of the week to get news coverage are Tuesday from Thursday.. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . Media Management. etc. Sydney. 2) Systems Development..Group Communication.. Marina Arcade. Check to see that there is no competing news events already scheduled at the time of your conference.. Extensive documentation is supplied and pre-course reading is sent to delegates in advance. ‘Getting to Grips with Mini and Micro-computers’ is the first of such courses to be conducted in India. or an important new issue.. Madrid and Rio de Janeiro. 3) Explain what they do. 5) Invite the Media: Send a press conference advisory to appropriate local media outlets at least a week before the press conference.. Refreshments will be served at 10. If you decide to hold the press conference indoors. 4) Explain what they can achieve. Place: Date: Time: The Conference Room.. Call them the day before to remind them about the event. 3) Work-out the Location of the Press Conference: Find an appropriate place that is convenient and has the facilities you need.T...T. Dublin.M.30 A. Dramatize your position by choosing a good backdrop. and the date. Singapore. Full details are given in the accompanying material. yet devised in mini and micro-computers.. . and friendly politicians. Director E.T. be ready to provide technical assistance for reporters. such as phones. The courses include practical use and experiences of: 1) Computer Components and Terminology. Institute of Administration International Course Director Inbucon Management Services Inc Major Steps for Setting up a Press Conference 1) Clearly State a Good Reason for Holding a Press Conference: The news you are going to reveal has not been covered in the press yet or there is an emergency. E. USA . Where you choose to have a press conference depends on your needs and the specific circumstances of your situation. enough light. Institute of Administration In conjunction with Inbucon Management Systems Inc.. We Aim to: 1) Remove the jargon. 5) Show how they can revolutionize your organization and procedures. House. New York. 6) How to buy. 4) Audit Security. 4) Set the Date and Time of the Press Conference: Take into account reporters’ deadlines while setting the date and time of the press conference. Trinidad. Nairobi. microphones. Milan. These courses have been conducted with great success in Brussels. allies. Abidjan.. Christchurch. Follow up with a phone call two days before the press conference to make sure that everyone received the advisory.. time and place of your next action. such as other members of your group. 2008 10 A.
Not all media were created equal. Let the press know that the speaker is available after press conference. most will eventually participate in both print and broadcast interviews. You can prepare a packet of fact sheets. viewers. What that message is depends a lot on who is reading/viewing/hearing the interview and when. knowing how to get your message across to the media can do a lot to actually promote your business. However. two or three points that you want to get across regardless of the questions you're asked.. Prepare your speaker with 30-second answers for radio or TV. 10) Practice Roles with the Members of Your Group: It’s important that everybody understands his/her role in the event. “What does your company plan to do about this?” In many ways. Starting the Press Conference 1) Be ready to welcome TV reporters at least 15 minutes before the beginning of the conference. too. or mix the message. If someone goes off subject.?” (What if reporters ask a non-spokesperson member a question? What if your opponents show up and heckle?) 11) Prepare Visual Aids: Charts. and to the pointed. The spokesperson should be experienced in the subject so s/he will be able to respond to questions after the statement.” 9) Prepare Background Materials: Reporters and guests may wish to have a copy of written statements or a press release. for example. In fact. it’s good to have just one or two speakers during a press conference so people don’t talk on top of each other. and listeners informed about this important community problem. if you let them. After the speakers are finished. Media Interviews You may feel nervous and uncomfortable in delivering a planned business presentation.. The trick is to be prepared. The key question to ask is “what if. ask for questions. Thank everyone for coming and offer additional information they can get in your office. Print reporters take advantage of this seemingly conversational approach and can keep you chatting for hours.. so be creative. big maps. brief. Often reporters will want to interview the spokesperson. Rehearse with the speaker(s) to make statements brief and clear and usually no longer then ten minutes. are much harder than broadcast despite their lack of intimidating cameras and recorders. Print interviews. Running the Press Conference The moderator welcomes everyone and briefly introduces the speaker(s). simple messages for print reporters. and how it will look to reporters.. the moderator can return the focus by saying such things as: “That’s an interesting point. having a reporter arrive during an unexpected company emergency and. to respect those who came on time. saying. Help your speaker practice with a video camera or tape recorder. After your important points are made. but we are here today to discuss. radio and print reporters to use. The moderator should end the press conference before things drag out too long. while holding a microphone in front of your face. While most recent graduates will not be expected to respond to interviews early in their careers. A little bit of humor will enliven the press conference. and quotable. slide shows are difficult for TV. 4) Start the press conference as close to on time as possible and certainly not later then ten minutes after the scheduled time. They usually need time to set up their equipment. Not all media interviews need be as frightening. 2) Meet everyone at the door and ask them to sign in a guest book you’ve already prepared (you may need their addresses for the next event). Make your answers simple. Remember that statements shouldn’t be longer than 10-15 minutes.. Good visual aids make your story more interesting. 3) Give them your background material and a copy of the press statement. today’s manager has to expect the unexpected..G . . Think about what will happen all the way through the press conference.. charts or graphs. 8) Choose a Moderator (Facilitator) for the Press Conference: You will need a person to control the process and keep reporters on the subject. You must go into every media encounter with your own messages. pictures or other props will help get your message across. You must tailor your messages for that audience in terminology they can easily understand. Thank them for keeping readers.196 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) 7) Prepare Your Spokesperson(s) to Deliver Your Message: Generally. step in and conclude the proceeding.
Below we prescribe five things that you should investigate prior to preparing for your interview: 1) Determine the Reason for the Interview Before you meet with the reporter. learn as much as you can about the reporter. Radio interviews offer an opportunity to narrowly focus your message to a particular demographic or psychographic niche audience reached by the station you're on. Gordon Andrew . Media Management.. This gives you a wonderful opportunity to do your homework and supply the reporter with information that is clearly organized and presented in a polished and professional way.. assure yourself that you really want to be interviewed and that you will carry a positive mental attitude into the interview. Your experience is indeed likely to be negative if you hold mental impressions such as. 2) On what issues. check out the reason for the meeting and decide whether you are the right person for the interview. This does not mean free advertising for you or your company. most of them is the result either of a reporter’s ignorance about the subject matter or time pressure in doing the interview and assembling the story. as stations now can have guests by phone as well as callers. ineffective body language or shifty-eyed glances off-camera. If the reason for the call is included in the invitation. What types of stories does he or she cover? What is the typical interviewing style? What are the potential reasons for the call? What are the expectations of the medium? It may not be possible to get answers to all these questions.. even from the comfort of your own home. then ask some additional questions. lists several rights that a manager should remember: i) You have a right to check a reporter’s credentials. to know the reasons for a requested interview. Build a positive mind-set that regards the reporter as a person who has a job to do with a deadline to meet and who wants to get all the facts. so why should I risk my neck now?” or “I’ve never met a reporter who didn’t try to crucify me with biased questions. Preview the Circumstances Before you ever agree to a media interview. you'd be surprised at how much information can be conveyed in that limited time. Television is perhaps the most challenging of the media because of its brevity. a New York public relations consultant. too. First. with training. If you receive an unexpected call. and to be told the nature of the questions you will be asked. the quick urge to respond disappears. but try.. you can respond quickly. Even a lengthy interview may be distilled down to a "sound bite" of but a few seconds. complexity and reach. 3) Avoid a Negative Mind-Set Some managers seek many excuses to avoid talking to reporters. Being a visual medium you'll want to keep viewers focused on your message rather than your flashy attire. 3) Where and 4) When.Group Communication. you should avoid this position. you may be the spokesperson selected. While negative stories sometimes run and inaccuracies do occur. “I’ve made it up the management ladder this far without going before a TV camera. If you have anticipated a possible media appearance.” Once you are “burned” by the media. On call-in shows you'll have plenty of time to deliver your messages. ii) You have a right not to discuss certain information that might be sensitive to you or your company’s interests. But. .197 You must set the guidelines for the interview: 1) Who will speak for your company. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . Is a response from you and your company necessary or appropriate? Are you the correct person to be involved? Do any company policies impinge on what you can say? 2) Anticipate Media Appearances If a crisis has occurred or if your company has a statement to make to the public. make a quick excuse and do some checking before you respond. It merely means that you are protected from a reporter’s verbal abuse. you can avoid the negative mind-set and develop a positive media initiative. iii) You have a right to have your viewpoint fairly represented in an interview. 4) Recognize Your Rights By recognizing your rights in relation to the media. They are on the other extreme from the ego star. and how well you can control what gets electronically quoted from your interview. given the usual short time frame.
Consider also the individual reporters. The majority of those interviews are disastrous. Who are they? 2) Organize Your Thoughts: Lewis Young. the reporter and the public. There are five steps to good preparation: 1) Analyze Your Dual Audience: One of the first steps in preparing for a speech or business presentation is to analyze your audience. Some interviewees ask a variety of questions about the reporter. begin thinking of the possible topics of discussion and questions you might be asked. You can request a list of questions in advance from the reporter. however. you can develop your own list by telephoning or writing media offices. Familiarize yourself with the media facilities before you ever get in front of the camera. Whether it is a new perspective on a familiar topic. Deliver your words with excitement. . especially if the discussion is about an emergency situation. ii) Develop a proactive mind-set and prepare yourself to meet with the media. canned interview. 3) Anticipate the Topics and Questions: How do you prepare for an interview? After you have analyzed your audience. Develop contacts with editors and reporters.G . ii) Make the Information Interesting: Word your ideas in ways that will make your audience want to hear more. but you should become more media conscious. develop their positive mind-set. your audience will be more interested if the material is new or stated in a new way. iii) Few will remember a single point they make. Learn as much as you can about the person who will interview you. Instead. you probably will not receive them.198 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) iv) You have a right to establish attribution rules with a reporter before the interview. Your public relations office can supply the names of contacts. believes that effective media responses are not the result of a well-spoken person. their training. Prepare for the Interview Being anxious about an interview is normal. and especially. Once you have organized your words. former editor-in-chief of Business Week. he or she is not obligated to ignore them. contends that executives should remember four things before going on camera: i) Very few viewers will remember their names. Jack Hilton. but there are positive ways to minimize the nervousness. and background? What are their opinions and interests? What are they likely to agree with? What are they likely to disagree with? Are they expert business reporters or general reporters for whom you may have to simplify and define terms? Next. iii) Remember that you need not become buddies with the interviewers. Good preparation always reaps good results. but of much preparation. they may give you some words of advice. in his book On Television. consider your readers or listeners. Since these groups carefully develop media policies and strategies. Most reporters will tell you the general topics only. ii) Virtually all will remember their affiliation. As you prepare to develop your thoughts into responses consider how you can get your most positive message across. In addition. iv) All viewers will decide promptly whether they like them or not. The person who is prepared and in control not the one who tries to wing it. The Canadian Psychological Association makes five recommendations to its members in preparation for media interviews: i) Make the Story New: Your comments should add something new to the listener’s knowledge base. fearing that further disclosure might produce a dull. consider the style that you will employ in delivering them. help you prepare. help you parallel your statements with those of other company employees. will leave the most positive impression. The same holds true for a media interview. Some critics believe that style is more important than substance because television is primarily a visual medium. develop a positive mind-set of how excited you are about the news you have to convey and how excited the reporter will be after you convey the information. Take guided tours of the press room or studio and join in live audience situations to get a feel for the way interviewers work in media situations. Such an agreement needs to be made in advance because if you tell a reporter your comments are off the record after you have made them. 5) Develop a Media Initiative i) Consult with the corporate communications or public relations department of your firm. What do they know about you? What do you represent to them? How do they perceive your expertise? What do you know about their age. the wise interviewee will spend considerable time preparing for the interview. Many reporters work on such a tight time schedule that they prepare the questions while driving to your interview. but here you have a dual audience. You should be able to anticipate key questions. Make a decision at the outset to be honest and to speak from your heart. If you learn your reporter is not very pleasant. and then go immediately for the interview. or the results of a new study.
For the press or television this will consist of about 75 words. Word your material so that an eight-year-old could comprehend the facts. 4) Develop Your Responses: Starting with the toughest questions you can imagine. v) Make the Story Memorable: Frame your ideas with a metaphor or story. 1) Dress for the Occasion: Pick comfortable clothing that reflects your profession. Develop it to fit their lives. Media Management. Phrase your response in yes-or-no context but expand it to at least a full sentence. iv) Make the Story Understandable: Avoid jargon. “I am sorry. vii) Record Your Own Interview: You may want to take your own small tape recorder to your interview. Doing this a . the public. and your colleagues will never again trust your credibility. ii) Do Not Use a “No Comment” Comment: At one time “no comment” meant simply that there was no news to share. practice these responses orally. Performance Techniques to Use On the day of your interview the focus is on you − your statements. you must maintain a totally calm appearance. obtain them and follow up with you this afternoon. be sure it has a powder base rather than oil. If you are warm-blooded. and the image you create. but also to check a reporter’s quotes against actual statements that you made. they are presently being calculated. tell them. Radio newscasters love one-sentence statements. write down simple one-. find the answer.” If you know where the answer can be found. You hope your preparation and practice time will pay off. Today when a company spokesperson uses the words it implies that there is something to hide. including competition. The following five ideas are primarily for television interviews. or three-point responses. in private or with the aid of your colleagues. Do not cross the line and state your position as the company’s position unless you clearly know your positions are the same and you have been authorized to make that position public. “I do not know the answer to that question at this time. Stick to one or two key points for ease of memory. If one does object. say why you can’t answer. 2) Keep Yourself Calm: As difficult as it may seem.” iii) Do Not Answer with a Simple “Yes” or “No”: After uttering easy yes or no answers. i) Do Not Respond to Unchecked Statistics: If an interviewer throws statistics at you with which you are unfamiliar or have not checked out. Taping the session will not only be good for use in future practice sessions.” or “I have not seen the figures”. I will. you should not only ask why but reconsider whether you want to go ahead with the interview. Remember.Group Communication. statements made off the record have a way of appearing in the middle of news stories. A business story that rates a column in a major newspaper may command only a single sentence on a national television network evening news program. Do a deepbreathing exercise before meeting the reporter.199 iii) Make the Story Relevant: Word your material so that the listeners can relate to it. The good news about bad news is that you can get it out of the way and prevent a continuing story. however. For now. however. Later. the person on the street or at home watching the news is not your peer. Say instead. Television deals essentially in headline news. Saying “no comment” makes you sound evasive and secretive and it creates suspicion. viii) Always Tell the Truth: The press and public accept that you may not tell the whole truth for many reasons. Answer instead. “I’m sorry. vi) Avoid Talking off the Record: In many cases. A good dictum is to say nothing that you do not wish to see in print. Keep jewelry to a minimum − wedding rings and watches are acceptable. This exercise requires that you exhale all the air out of your lungs and that you very slowly inhale through your nose. iv) Be Careful About Stating your Personal Opinions: In most instances. but I do not have those figures. you may be surprised to find them cut and pasted onto another question by an unscrupulous newsperson. Glasses can be another problem. If you wear makeup. Be open with the reporter about wanting to make the recording. make sure the responses fit into a 30-second time frame. If you cannot answer. v) Tell them if You Do Not Know the Answer: If you are asked a question for which you have absolutely no answer. 5) Be Aware of Additional Concerns: The final step in good interview preparation is to refresh your mind with some additional concerns. but we cannot make additional comments on the event until next of kin have been notified. I will. two-. you are representing the company. do not answer the question. or before the camera is turned on. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . direct them to it. Many people who wear them do not want their pictures taken with them on and will probably not want their television image to be one wearing glasses. the issues you represent. Most reporters will not care. But if you resort to lying − even once − the press. so your face will not be shiny. choose cooler fabrics.
deep breathe again when there is a break for commercials. Keep a consistent volume and rate. crossed arms. Don’t try to see yourself on the monitor. or poor eye contact. This can take the form of clenched fists. what was the result? 2) Did you assume that the reporter understood the issue? If not. Now state your ideas in a quick 30second or one-minute response. Regardless of the turmoil in your stomach. develop two or three quick statements that support or clarify your thought. Do not swivel about. iii) Stay alert physically.G .200 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) couple of times helps to lower the anxiety and give you a greater sense of well-being. you are the expert. 1) Prior to the interview. Here are some non-verbal expressions that are important to remember: i) Use natural hand gestures to highlight your points. Also avoid displaying anger or high emotion. quickly bridge the question to a previous question or answer. the clothing you wore. work on maintaining the positive image of a professional executive that you have viewed so many times on television. the heat. With your thought in mind. If you are being interviewed during a live event. But here is a trick to use when a spontaneous question is asked that you were not expecting. At that point. 3) Be Ready for the Spontaneous Questions: If you have done your preparation. Knowing your material and having practiced your comments are the first step in making this a reality. Often there is a time delay between the picture and your voice. you should evaluate your performance. iv) Lean forward slightly in your chair. look and talk directly into the camera lens that has the red light. enthusiastic. The information gathered will prove valuable as you prepare for future interviews. Second. In interviews. and you should keep your attention focused on the interviewer. Maintaining an erect posture and good breath control while talking can help you through the rough spots. they will be helpful during the next preparation stage. Avoid letting your voice drop at the end of sentences. and v) Rest your hands naturally in your lap. Remember. Avoid defensive-looking body language. Even when the light is off continue to stay alert because another camera may be on you. do not take it personally. Learn to relax your body. Talk through the following questions alone and with your staff and colleagues. and wear a warm facial expression. 5) Try to Ignore the Cameras: The technicians and director will take the shots they want. the use of the microphone. Post-Interview Evaluation Questions Following each press or media interview. If a reporter tries to provoke you or get you off balance. Take careful notes. 6) Display Confidence in Your Voice: Develop a professional sound. never let the interviewer and audience suspect that you are not in control. Ordinary conversational tones are the best. or neutral about meeting the media? 14) Were you bothered by the studio lights. the non-verbal image is extremely important. tightened facial expressions. or did you occasionally get off-track and get into too much depth? 7) Did you allow the reporter to get away from the point of the interview? 8) Did you find yourself answering questions that you knew nothing about? 9) Did you use positive instead of negative words? 10) Were you able to build bridges to your desired answers? 11) Was the reporter overt or covert in nature? 12) Were you familiar with your material? 13) Before the interview did you feel reluctant. did you take the reporter for granted? If so. or your posture? 15) What specific things do you want to change before your next interview? . sit in a comfortable and professional manner. 4) Let Your Body Talk: A large percentage of our information about the world comes from non-verbal cues. Maintain your calm and unemotional manner. The exception to this guideline is when you want to directly address the television audience. ii) Maintain good eye contact with the interviewer. This asynchrony can be very distracting and can cause you to lose your train of thought. even when you are not talking. what was the impact? 3) Did you anticipate that the reporter might oppose or support your position? Which position did he or she actually take? 4) Before the interview were you prepared to defend your position through a fair and accurate rebuttal? 5) Did you start the interview by presenting your most important news? 6) Did you answer the questions directly and briefly. or to a response that you wanted to make but were not given the opportunity. Look and act relaxed. you will be ready to answer all the questions a reporter might have.
By imagining the likely reaction of the person you are to meet. boorish or indisciplined behavior cannot lead to fruitful business relationships. Unquestioned integrity is the first golden rule of good business behavior. irreverent and self-confident. They help you realize when your behavior is appropriate or inappropriate. which act as norms to be observed by all professionals who work as a team in a particular company or department. You should not fail to observe the civilities of business life. or indulge in character assassination at coffee-breaks. and disloyalty to your company or colleagues are unacceptable business manners. based on the fundamental principles of organizational behavior. Never let your appearance become a liability. knowingly or unknowingly. Personality (P). the rules of good professional conduct. speak or write. and dinners. Manners (M). Fundamental Rules of Business Etiquette The golden rules of business etiquette can be easily remembered by the word ‘IMPACT’ whose letters signify Integrity (I). 2) Manners: It means the patterns of behavior. 5) Consideration: See yourself from the viewpoint of others. the rule of business etiquette means more than the rules of just being nice. business organizations set rules of etiquette relating to the following: 1) Introduction. A successful negotiator role plays the likely action of his opposition before meeting him. 6) Telephone etiquette. disloyal and arrogant. 3) Personality: It communicates your own values. You can be passionate. A well-clothed and rightly postured appearance makes good impression on others. truthful and trustworthy manner. we are ignoring. Speaking or acting in a racist or sexist manner. help in a situation. as in life. A reputation for integrity is slowly gained but quickly lost. . They are aware of their company’s culture and etiquette. Appearance (A). Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . Generally speaking. we choose to turn up late for meetings habitually. But there are general rules of business etiquette. Successful professionals know how to conduct themselves at company meetings. 5) Business-to-Business etiquette. 6) Tact: Think before you speak or act. attitudes and opinions. In business. 3) Interactions with foreign clients. They mean the fundamental rules that get business done. This approach to business etiquette assumes that each business setting has its business protocols which an employee learns by working in that environment and by observing others. Your behavior will decide whether your qualities are appreciated or not. 4) Interpersonal business etiquette. Our behavior may disrupt the smooth working of the team by causing misunderstanding and tension among fellow workers. Media Management. or ignore deadlines. The rules are briefly stated below: 1) Integrity: It means you act in an honest.Group Communication. A balanced approach is necessary. 4) Appearance: Always present yourself to your best advantage. Consideration (C) and Tact (T). This identification with others is the best form of business etiquette and culture. But you should not be emotional. you can deal with him more carefully and sensitively. parties. and etiquette. These rules are unwritten rules. In an organization. Avoid thoughtless and impulsive words and actions. not request (as a favor).201 BUSINESS ETIQUETTES Meaning and Importance of Business Etiquettes The word ‘etiquette’ means conventional rules of social behavior. There is always the temptation to react immediately to some provocation or situation in business dealings. Further. If we ignore these norms of group attitude and behavior. Suppose. or professional conduct. When in doubt say nothing. Scope of Business Etiquette Every organization evolves its own set of norms of behavior. etiquette is a self-rewarding trait of appropriate conduct. we run the risk of being singled out as ‘loners’ or ‘headstrong’ persons. This is made possible by our ability to empathize with other workers’ job concerns and priorities. Selfish. or demand (as a right). 2) Business Dining. behavior. our basic concern is to create a smooth work environment where each person helps others to carry on their jobs with ease.
if you are meeting the same person the second or third time after a gap of some weeks/months.” Business etiquette norms seek to make all concerned parties act comfortably. But if you are going to meet a person for the first time. religious ceremonies. But many people fail to do so. you should ask for his/her card. If you simply say. “I am Irfan Mohammad. re-state your name tactfully by saying. lunch or dinner. Therefore. makes every one feel relaxed and creates a congenial atmosphere for the meeting. Yeats” or “Tony Blair”. They also have formal occasions to be together at lunch or dinner parties. we recognize her/him. This is why it is polite to show that you missed telling the host/the other party your name (who you are). clients. and Sterling Gold Informatics. So. I am Meenakshi Tiwari. there is no harm in simply re-introducing. and host party. These business occasions of meals with colleagues. They are not rules of discipline. I am sorry. They define the norms and forms of appropriate behavior as executives or the educated and cultured members of a group. Before the other person detects your failure. people greet each other by stating their full names and positions (in office) at the very outset. or birthday parties. You can say. but we wish to have more details about the person.” Not just “Misra” or “Prafulla”.G . Americans prefer to introduce themselves by their surnames only. group. Or. But it is possible that on meeting her or him at a meeting/seminar/conference or some other place. or organization. Sometimes. with a sense of responsibility. How to Introduce Yourself Correctly As a norm of business etiquette and the first step towards cordial business transactions. “Could I know your full name? I have your initials. we may have been visiting a person so often. but fail to recall the exact name. How to Introduce Other Persons One of the difficult things you have to do is perhaps to introduce other persons at a business meeting. Like “Lewis” or “Dickenson”. in fact. CEO. Repeat Your Name when Necessary During a conversation. At such occasions.B. Therefore. At such moments you should help the host/the other party immediately by politely repeating your name “I am Irfan Mohammad. members of visiting party. We should keep in mind that such business occasions are. or consultants have their own protocol (code of behavior) and they must be followed for cracking business deals. weddings. But Britishers introduce by using first name and surname. Notice that first name and surname are stated like “Prafulla Misra. the other party may forget your name or may have missed hearing it.” it may suggest that the other person has made fault by forgetting your name. or they feel too shy to do it. a clear and complete introduction of each person. The status communicates the role the person plays in the business transaction. Either they think it to be a bold act. Do not consider it merely as an occasion for free drinking and smoking.202 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) Introduction Introducing Yourself A confident self-introduction always makes a positive first impression. Colleagues meet before or after the office hours. therefore. I should have told you. It is common practice to negotiate business at. we should follow the cultural norms which set the unwritten protocol (rules) of behavior as members of a company. You can observe the following established norms regarding business meals.” To be tactful in such situations is also good business etiquette. act. they meet at social functions and festivals. We should know each other in terms of their names and professional status before we conduct the meeting or discuss the transaction. “W. “I should have told you.” On Failing to Recall Someone’s Name In business. . If you let the other person know that you have forgotten his/her names it may make the person feel that he/she is not important enough to be remembered (by name). “Could I have your latest business card for your telephone number/and address?” or you can just say. Business Dining Business meals can be with colleagues or clients. we should act as if we know the name. the other person is bound to feel comfortable to know who you are and why you are there. business activities.
As a host. creed. Receive the guest personally outside the dining hall. such as employers and prospective employees. you should arrange to pay for the taxi to take back the guest to his/her place of work or stay. Move in together to the table. And it is only proper that you. they should be dealt with very carefully. as laid down by caste. If you do not or cannot. Respecting cultural needs. The same must be your attitude to drinks. some points or conclusions are sometimes noted down. A little signal from you catches their attention immediately. knives. Abhishekh who is looking after management trainees will also be with us”. the best thing to do is to say. you should reach the hotel or restaurant a little ahead of the given time and personally check the seating arrangements made by the hotel/restaurant manager. But Indians. The only cutlery used by them could be a spoon. convenient for both parties. make the payment of the bill. will go a long way in developing good business . If necessary. and a spoon is an indicator of your culture. 6) If you have the time. As a Guest As a guest you should stick to your own dietary preferences. then you should know how to use them for different things. Business meals provide opportunities for easy give-and-take negotiations. Table Manners Business dinners are formal occasions. Similarly.203 As a Host As a host. If the venue is new for the guest. But. take something. If you are hungry. Don’t ask your guests where they would like to eat but make sure you take them somewhere nice. 5) Starters are a great idea if you have something complicated to discuss. For instance. 4) Always eat slower than your guests. interviewer and interviewee. “My colleague. time. Media Management. It is courteous to ask the guest to order his/her choice of dishes/food and soft drinks. 8) Do not drink too much! If you must have alcohol then one drink before the meal is sufficient. 7) Switch off your mobile. invite the guest personally. the host opens the subject of the meeting in a general form to provide a context for the specific matter to be discussed. This gives you even more time to market your widgets. the best way is try and establish eye contact and if necessary turn a little towards him/her. They will then not feel rushed to finish their food. How to Get Your Server’s Attention Usually. They democratize business by bringing two complementary parties. religious beliefs. 2) Have a set agenda and do not let your guests know anything about it beforehand unless they have requested it or the situation demands it. Do not talk with your mouthful. The time between ordering and the food arriving is a great time to get to know each other and sell your product or service. clean and just as important. However. or religion or personal choice. In the letter you should mention this fact and give their names and positions. and place in writing. as host. help him/her by giving directions of the venue. Interaction with Foreign Clients Since the foreign clients belong to different culture. After some initial pleasantries. What is more important than trying to win more business? If possible ask your guests to kindly switch off their mobiles. It is a good idea to take your guest to someplace where you are well known and respected. if you find that you have to call the waiter. may be over telephone. Business Lunch Etiquettes for Host 1) Turn up on time and well dressed. do not order the main course until you have finished the starter. prefer to eat food with their hands. companies and clients. confirm the date. 3) Take control and go somewhere where you enjoy the food. The meeting is held in a free and relaxed manner. and the attitude of the foreign visitors. It is a good practice to confirm once again the scheduled meeting a day prior to the event.Group Communication. waiters are watchful. if you are using knife and fork. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . And still if you feel you have to draw his/her attention. Are you there to discuss business or get drunk? In a similar vein limit the amount of alcohol that your guest drinks so that you can have a proper discussion. The manner of using forks. as equals at a social occasion. you should feel free to refuse. “Excuse me!” This is bound to work. Business talk is conducted in an informal manner. acquaint the invitee of your guest list. Eating with the hand is just fine. then it might be a good idea to have a sandwich before you meet. However.
Accordingly. office culture.? The answer that you get would prove useful both for formal and informal conversation. there may be some aspects of social and religious beliefs of our foreign visitors which we should try to respect in our business environment. Take interest in what is being said. A foreign visitor may not know English as well as we do. In a conversation.). Germans. ‘allergic. It links people together.G . and ‘excellent’ may also spoil the pleasant informal atmosphere in which conversation ought to take place. 2) Prepare documents in languages. English and the foreign visitor’s language. my family and my interests? 6) Do I have a tendency to dominate every conversation in any situation? 7) Do I give the other participants a chance to speak? 8) Have I any traits likely to annoy people? 9) Do I respect other people’s time and interests? 10) Am I self-conscious about the language I use − grammar. relatives and colleagues whom we like and trust. the following tips should be followed: 1) The conversation should be of interest to the participant and may begin with a topic in which both of you have some interests. 7) The smooth flow of conversation is likely to be hampered if you deliberately use foreign words or use highflown vocabulary to impress the listener. expressions that smack of affection and exaggeration should be shunned. we assume that foreign business visitors would observe our business norms such as trade practices. and the attitude of the foreign visitors. Japanese. Avoid using them frequently in conversation. 3) Try to learn and use some words of greetings in the visitor’s language. ‘wonderful’. 2) Be always courteous and cheerful. 5) Being dogmatic and argumentative may spoil your conversation. Language 1) Nothing pleases foreigners more than speaking to them in their own language. Since every professional is required to participate in this form of dyadic communication. will go a long way in developing good business relations. French. 3) Be alert to the attitudes that others may have and do not be surprised when you realize that the attitudes are likely to change. It is useful first to analyze your own conversation habits and then try to change them for greater effectiveness. This need not bother you because often during these spells new thoughts are generated. Respecting cultural needs. Ask yourself questions such as the following for self-analysis: 1) Do I find it difficult to start a conversation? 2) Am I unable to pick a topic? 3) Am I unable to keep the conversation flowing smoothly? 4) Do I always agree with what others say or disagree with them all the time? 5) Do I frequently talk about myself. take care of your language and oral demeanor. If you speak the name aloud you would be generating more friendly feelings. An analysis of your own speech may reveal that you have a fad for certain words or phrases (e. the participant has to play the role of a speaker or a listener interchangeably. working hours. but it is useful to have a point of view. and so on. religious beliefs. An overuse of words such as ‘very lovely’.. ‘time frame’. if necessary. 6) Avoid pet and superfluous words and phrases.204 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) relations. English is today a global link language. Yet Arabs. As a host. But. To cap it all. That is why conversation rarely finds a place in a programme of formal instruction. be it in social business or professional life. articulation. let us briefly look at some of the important points to be borne in mind. Similarly. Most of us find it easy to converse with our friends. it is our primary duty to make our guest feel fully comfortable in every way. 4) Occasionally.’ etc. pronunciation. . and Russians prefer to conduct business in their own language. As it flows into new channels adjust yourself to the comments and new points of view. call the person by name and look at him while speaking. Very often we form an impression about an individual from the way he talks and the topic(s) on which he converses. Therefore.g. We generally believe that when we visit abroad we should behave according to the business norms and etiquette of the place. Occasionally there would be spells of silence. Interpersonal Business Etiquette (Face-to-Face Contacts) Interpersonal or dyadic communication is an integral part of business relation. use an interpreter. for important business occasions. etc. For effective interpersonal business relations.
Media Management. Dealing with Customers 1) 2) 3) 4) Treat all the customers well. Good business behavior includes the following: Respecting Hierarchies 1) 2) 3) 4) While dealing with persons from other companies. respond. You are a part of your company’s activities. do not ignore the small customers and clients. No company can be free from problems and setbacks. . Be Loyal to Your Organization 1) Do not criticize your organization before your colleagues from other companies. you must know to whom you exactly want to speak and choose the most convenient time. Be prepared to respond in case the opposite party concedes a point. make your status clear through your business card. be clear about the why (your purpose) and what (the exact content) of your call. In telephonic conversation. Always keep before you the points in the order in which you want to discuss. Be prepared to compromise in case minimum terms acceptable to you are satisfied. Handling Negotiations 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) Make your company’s position clear. The norms for interpersonal behavior apply also to company-to-company behavior. Keep yourself fully informed of the new developments and better prospects for the company.205 Business-to-Business Etiquette Individuals represent companies. Seminars and Etiquettes (Module 8) G . Confidential Matters 1) Keep confidential material in as few hands as possible. 2) Defend your colleague’s action without offending the complainant. 4) Feel proud of your organization’s achievements. Know the status of the other persons. Making a Call − Be Brief and Concise Prepare before Calling Before initiating a call. It can be used against the interest of your company. Each individual is the company’s image builder. Execute the customer’s orders promptly. Use a level of formality appropriate to your respective positions. Be polite but firm. jot down the points you want to discuss. Promise corrective action on your colleague’s/company’s behalf. Make the best presentation of your case. You should also know whether you are calling as a follow-up action of some other earlier communication. Agree on the way communication and decisions are to be handled. 3) Always speak well of your company. 1) To be brief and concise. But highlight the positive gains and not the losses. 3) Help others develop trust in you. Be fair in dealing with the customers. 2) Secure records and use code names if the information involves protecting the concerned persons. Telephone Etiquette Handling business calls requires awareness of our unconscious actions which often amount to bad manners or lack of appropriate skills of effective invisible interpersonal communication. Handle customers’ complaints urgently and with due care. For business calls. Do not leak other’s secrets to protect your own secrets from getting leaked. Confidentiality is a mutual act of trust. The individual should know how to conduct himself/or herself as a representative of the company. Decide on the most effective way to use your respective positions.Group Communication. speak or hang up is often as important as what is communicated. the way we receive. or it is the first step in your transaction (of information and dealings).
.G .. . Even. 4) Keep the duration of the conversation as short as possible..” is a more polite form of request.. “Can we talk about the tender for the Golden Highway project?” or just ask.” is not a polite request. you should structure your information from the receiver’s point of interest. company.. you should check with the person you are calling in a polite manner. Always use interrogative form for making a request. “May I request you to.” Telephone Precaution As a caller you do not know whether the person receiving your call is alone. courtesy demands that the person who originally initiated the call should redial immediately and say. “I want to talk to . the call got disconnected.” Use of direct categorical statement amounts to order.. and clear articulation of words. such as pleasant tone. “Are you free? Can we talk about the tender?” This would save you from causing any embarrassment to receiver. Talk about your interests later. the telephone line suddenly gets disconnected.” In case. As a caller. Therefore. begin with self-introduction − your name. the statement. but may not exactly know you..” or “May I. Begin first with what is important for your receiver. Instead. The receiver may be familiar with your purpose and your company. If the Call is Cut Off Many times. Telephone etiquette involves good manners to create good business relations between two persons. We should be able to convey larger part of the message through our way of speaking rather than the meaning of words alone.. proper intonation.. if you have to discuss something personal or something you won’t like others to know. They can be overheard/ tapped in transmission. when you make a request or get something done or completed. “I request you to connect me to so and so number/or person” is not quite appropriate for requesting an unknown person to do something for you even if it is his/her duty... and purpose. In the latter case. “Sorry. In such situations.. say. For example. The other person may not be free to spare much time for your call. Instead “May I talk to .206 Thakur’s MBA First Semester HB (Business Communication) 2) Keep a (writing) pad and pen ready to note down any information worth recording. How to Begin or Receive a Call The first few words spoken by you as a caller or receiver are important for establishing your identity and purpose. Communication over the phone requires the use of non-verbal skills. sweet voice. Common Telephone Courtesies Make your business calls polite by using words.. unless you both have personally met and spoken to each other earlier.. such as ‘Please’ and ‘Thank you’. the first rule of telephone conversation is that confidential matters should never be discussed over the phone. They create the context for further conversation. you may say. you may not be personally known to the receiver. it is the duty of the receiver to resume the call and use some pleasant explanation to see that you do not feel embarrassed. Therefore. the receiver has to suspend your call for attending to some other more important call. “Could I .... 3) Consider whether the call is important from your point of view or from the receiver’s point of view.. or risk of leakage.. However.
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